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Microsoft Word 2003

Style Basics

By using styles, you can save time that you might otherwise spend formatting your document and give your documents a consistent look. Besides making formatting easier to apply, styles also offer an advantage when you revise document formats. When you change the formatting in the style, all paragraphs that are formatted with this style will automatically change. For more information on style, refer to Styles: An Overview.

return to topAccessing the Styles and Formatting Task Pane

The Styles and Formatting task pane is used extensively when working with styles in Word 2003. Styles can be quickly set, applied, and modified by using the task pane.

  1. From the Formatting toolbar, click STYLES AND FORMATTINGStyles and Formatting button
    The Styles and Formatting task pane appears.
    Styles and Formatting task pane

return to topCreating Your Own Styles

The process of using styles of your own involves two steps. First you create the style, specifying formatting choices like paragraph indentations, line spacing, font, and font size. Second, you apply that style to other characters or paragraphs in your document. You can create paragraph styles in two ways: by example or by using the Styles and Formatting task pane.

Creating Your Own Style: By Example

To create a style by example, you must first format a paragraph the way you want it, and then create a style based on the formatting in that paragraph. As you format your first paragraph (the one you will be using as an example to create a style), remember that paragraph styles also contain character formatting. Character formatting includes the font, size, etc. If your example paragraph contains left and right indents and a border, those formatting choices will also be part of your style.

  1. Format your example paragraph using character or paragraph formatting, borders and shading, frames and positioning, and tabs
    WARNING: Make sure your character formatting is consistent. For example, if one word in your paragraph is bold, every word in your new style will be bolded.

  2. Place your insertion point within the newly formatted example paragraph
    In the Styles and Formatting task pane, a style has been created and is selected.

  3. To name the new style,
    1. From the pull-down list of the selected style, select Modify...
    2. In the name text box, type a new name for the style
    3. click OK

Creating Your Own Style: Using the New Style Dialog Box

If you want to create styles before you use them rather than creating them by example, use the New Style dialog box. Using this feature, you name a style, define its formatting characteristics, and select options, such as whether to base the style on another style, whether to follow it with another style, and whether to add the style to the current template. You can also import and export styles to and from other documents and templates.

When you create a style by using the New Style dialog box, you have the option to apply that style to the currently selected paragraph, or simply add it to the list of styles you created for your document or your template.

  1. Access the Styles and Formatting task pane

  2. Click NEW STYLE
    The New Style dialog box appears.
    New Style dialog box

  3. In the Name text box, type a name for the new style
    All names are case sensitive, so be sure to type it in exactly as you want it.

  4. To create a character style, in the Properties section, from the Style type pull-down list, select Character
    To create a paragraph style, in the Properties section, from the Style type pull-down list, select Paragraph

  5. OPTIONAL: From the Style based on pull-down list, select an existing style to base the new style on
    NOTE: To create a completely new style, select (no style).

  6. In the Formatting section, make the appropriate adjustments for your style

  7. OPTIONAL: To make additional formatting selections,
    1. Click FORMAT
      A list of formatting selections appears.
    2. Select the attribute you want to change
      A dialog box appears corresponding to the attribute you chose
      EXAMPLE: Font dialog box, Paragraph dialog box
    3. Complete the corresponding dialog box
    4. Click OK
      To do more formatting, repeat steps 7a-7d.

  8. Click OK
    To create additional styles, repeat steps 2-8.

return to topApplying Your Own Style

You can apply a paragraph or a character style by selecting a style name from the Styles and Formatting task pane, or by using the Formatting toolbar.

Applying Your Own Style: Task Pane Option

  1. Access the Styles and Formatting task pane

  2. Select the text you wish to apply the style to

  3. From the Pick formatting to apply section, select the style you want to apply
    The style is applied.

Applying Your Own Style: Toolbar Option

  1. Select the text you wish to apply the style to

  2. On the Formatting toolbar, from the Style pull-down list, select the style you want to apply

return to topModifying a Style

When you modify a style, all the text that has been formatted with that style is updated to reflect the changes you have made. Suppose that you finish a 35-page report with many subheadings formatted with a style called Subhead, which includes 18-point, bold, Arial, and centered text. Now you decide that the subheadings should be smaller and justified left. Simply modify the Subhead style to reflect the new formatting and all the text within the Subhead style will change.

Each time you begin a new document based on the Normal template, Word uses the Normal style to determine the font, font size, line spacing, and other formats. If you find that you are always changing the font, the point size, or some other aspect of the Normal style, you can change its default format settings. If you are working in a lab, Word may not permanently update the Normal template.

  1. Access the Styles and Formatting task pane

  2. On the Styles and Formatting task pane, under the Pick formatting to apply section, move your pointer over the style you wish to modify
    An arrow for a pull-down list appears.

  3. From the pull-down list, select Modify...
    The Modify Style dialog box appears.

  4. In the Properties section, make the desired changes

  5. In the Formatting section, make the desired changes

  6. OPTIONAL: To make more extensive changes,
    1. Click FORMAT
      A list of formatting selections appears.
    2. Select the attribute you want to change
      A dialog box appears corresponding to the attribute you chose
      EXAMPLE: Font dialog box, Paragraph dialog box
    3. Complete the corresponding dialog box
    4. Click OK
      To do more formatting, repeat steps 6a-6d.

  7. Click OK
    To modify additional styles, repeat steps 3-7.

return to topDeleting a Style

When you delete a paragraph style that you created, Word applies the Normal style to all paragraphs formatted with that style. If you delete a character style you created, Word removes the style formats from any text that you applied the character style to.

NOTE: Not all built-in styles can be deleted.

  1. Access the Styles and Formatting task pane

  2. On the Styles and Formatting task pane, under the Pick formatting to apply section, move your pointer over the style you wish to delete
    An arrow for a pull-down list appears.

  3. From the pull-down list, select Delete...
    A confirmation dialog box appears.

  4. To confirm that you want to delete the style, click YES
    The style is deleted.

return to topClearing All Formatting

There may be times when you want to clear all formatting from selected text or even an entire document. It may be that you are working with text from another source, or you just want to start fresh with unformatted text.

  1. Access the Styles and Formatting task pane

  2. Select the text you want to remove the formatting from
    HINT: To select all the text in your document, press [Ctrl] + [A].

  3. From the Pick formatting to apply section, select Clear Formatting
    All formatting is removed from the selected text.

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